Women’s Prize for Fiction Announces 2023 Longlist and Offer Reading Groups the Opportunity to Shadow the Shortlist

The Women’s Prize for Fiction – the greatest international celebration of women’s creativity – announces the 2023 longlist. Now in its 28th year, the Prize shines a spotlight on outstanding, ambitious original fiction written in English by women from anywhere in the world.

The longlist

The 2023 longlist features both debut and bestselling, prize-winning writers. Two of the authors – Maggie O’Farrell and Barbara Kingsolver – are former winners of the Women’s Prize for Fiction, whilst three others – Natalie Haynes, Laline Paull and Elizabeth McKenzie – have previously been shortlisted. Three of the books are retellings – Demon Copperhead is inspired by Dickens’s David Copperfield; Stone Blind is an exploration of the Greek myth of Medusa; and The Marriage Portrait is a historical depiction of Lucrezia, the daughter of Cosimo de’ Medici, a young woman omitted from history.

The judges

After months of dedicated reading, this year’s panel of judges have selected 16 truly distinctive novels, and we can’t wait for readers everywhere to discover them.

Chair of judges Louise Minchin says:

‘This year’s longlist is a glorious celebration of the boundless imagination and creative ambition of women writers over the past year. Every one of these 16 books is excellent and original in its own individual way; they all offer fresh perspectives on history and humanity, exploring hard truths with empathy, sensitivity, directness, and sometimes infectious humour. There is something here for all readers! It has truly been a life-enhancing experience to judge the Women’s Prize for Fiction longlist this year, and we are looking forward to celebrating these voices that need to be heard.’

Louise Minchin is joined on the judging panel by novelist Rachel Joyce; journalist, podcaster and writer Bella Mackie; novelist and short story writer Irenosen Okojie; and Tulip Siddiq, Member of Parliament. Set up in 1996 to celebrate and promote fiction by women to the widest range of readers possible, the Women’s Prize for Fiction is awarded for the best full-length novel of the year written by a woman and published in the UK between 1 April 2022 and 31 March 2023. Any woman writing in English – whatever her nationality, country of residence, age or subject matter – is eligible. The judges will narrow down this longlist of 16 books to a shortlist of six, which will be announced on Wednesday 26 April 2023. The 2023 Women’s Prize for Fiction will be awarded on Wednesday 14 June 2023 at the Women’s Prize Trust’s summer party in central London. The winner will receive an anonymously endowed cheque for £30,000 and a limited-edition bronze figurine known as a ‘Bessie’, created and donated by the artist Grizel Niven. More information can be found on the Women’s Prize for Fiction website here.

Shadow the shortlist

We have the exciting opportunity for six reading groups to shadow the shortlist of the Women’s Prize for Fiction 2023. Each selected group will receive a set of copies of one shortlisted book – in the format of their choice – which they will need to read, discuss and review.

This year, we are delighted to invite the six selected groups to a private Zoom event with the Women’s Prize for Fiction judges, where two members will share their groups feedback. Groups will have the chance to meet the other groups involved, share their reflections on the books, and get a unique glimpse behind the scenes of the Prize with Louise Minchin, Chair of the Women’s Prize for Fiction for 2023.

If your group would like to take part, please find out more and apply by 20 April 2023.

Groups will be selected and books will be sent following the shortlist announcement on 27 April 2023.

Get involved

If you work in a library or workplace and would like to promote the longlist, you can download a free digital pack from our shop.

What do you think of the 2023 longlisted titles? Which have you read and what will be added to your TBR pile? Add your comments below, or click any title above to leave a review.

Share your thoughts with us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram using #WomensPrize.

Keep up with all the latest news on the Women’s Prize website.

Want to make sure you never miss the latest reading group news? Sign up for our free monthly newsletter.

The Reading Agency

Join our mailing list

Get our newsletters to stay up to date with programme news, resources, news and more.

Back to Top